Wine and foodie tour of FRANCE mid-summer 2014!!!!

  • July 1, 2014 · 12:00 PM
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Let me be your guide this summer through the best wine, food, scenery, culture and shopping (!) that France has to offer!  

[Note 4/8/14: this event is full! If you are interested in being an alternate please send me an email. At this point, only members that I know fairly well will be considered, i.e., you have attended several events, we have talked, etc.]

Special invitation-only trip to Paris, Burgundy, and Provence. 2 weeks, with possibility of hooking up with the group for first leg in Paris only. As many of you know, I lived in Paris for almost 4 years, speak French fluently and did this trip summer 2012. Several of you have asked that I re-trace my trip with the group, so here it is!

There will be lots of amazing food, wine, scenery, sight seeing, art, culture, *walking / hiking*, and just good times. Some highlights:

PARIS! Stroll along the quai of La Seine, picnic under the Eiffel Tower, explore the Left Bank, visit the Louvre, have superb meals. 

BURGUNDY! walk through the most famous vineyards in the world: Chambertin, Meursault, Nuits St. George, taste wine in the caves underneath Beaune.  

PROVENCE!  hike through fields of lavender, AOC olive groves, eat tapenade, drink local rose *all day*, wine tasting in Chateauneuf-du-Pape, hang by the pool at our rented house in Ardeche.

COST: It will be fantastic, but expensive. Air fare alone is $1500, so expect a budget of about $4000/person for the 2 week trip. My planning and guide fee is $300 each. I will update with a more realistic figure closer to when we leave.

STATUS: Booked. 10 people or so, invitation only. Members and guests only, everyone has to be well known to me and the others, compatible, independent, flexible, fun, food & wine-loving types that know how to enjoy themselves. We will be doing a lot of walking, so you need to be in reasonable physical shape. You can bring a guest (16+). 

Our group has meet regularly over several months to plan a very custom experience. We also had some good food and wine along the way :-)


PARIS (days 1-6)

7/1 pm: flights out of Boston

7/2: arrive Paris; check into hotel (Latin Quarter); recoup,
light dinner @ Brasserie La Coupole; some doing Jack Johnson concert

7/3: bkfast; group tour Musee d'Orsay, evening free

7/4!: bkfast; walk quai of Seine, picnic lunch Effiel Tower
Epic group dinner @ L’Apicius, Michelin 2-star in 8th

7/5: morning off, shopping!!: Alesia outlets, Marais, Latin Quarter, tea

7/6: bkfast; walking tour of Montmartre / Sacre Coeur
Small group diner at l'Apicure, Michelin 3 star!

7/7: free morning and afternoon; evening ballet @ Paris Opera

BURGUNDY (days 7-9)

7/8: check out Paris, rent vans, 4 hr drive to Beaune, check into inn, evening tasting dinner at inn
La Maison d'Olivier Leflaive, Puligny-Montrachet

7/9: morning tour of Leflaive vineyards and cellars; afternoon hike through upper Côte d'Or, picnic lunch, evening free

7/10: car tour of vineyards, Clos Vougeot, etc.

Afternoon walking tour of Beaune, Les Hospices du Beaune

Evening cellar tour & tasting Bouchard Pere et Fils, Beaune

PROVENCE (days 10-12)

7/11: check out inn, 4 hr ride south to Ardeche, Provence 
Afternoon: Beaucastel cellar tour & tasting (Jim's fav!!!)

Evening: check-in to Villa Provence, Saint-Christol-de-Rodières

7/12: Open air market in Pont-Saint-Esprit; pool party at house!

7/13: tours: Ardeche, Vaison-la-Romaine, Gigondas, Travel, 
St. Jalle: lavendar fields, olive groves, wheat, peach...

7/14: check out inn, 8 hr ride north drive to Paris /CDG


7/15: return vans, flights out Paris -> Boston

Alright! Let's get started.


Photo Gallery

Here are some more photos to stir your imagination. There are some stock shots, but many are from my trip to France Summer 2012.


Telephoto view of Sacré-Cœur on Montmartre, Paris by night (stock photo)

Parisian cafe breakfast: OJ, Café au lait, croissant, pain au chocolat (that's me in the background)

Pastry in Paris. Nice with afternoon tea!

Belle Époque entrance to the Metropolitain, the Paris subway (stock photo).

View of Notre Dame Cathedral from La Seine.

Night shot of inner courtyard and entrance to the Musée du Louvre, Paris (stock photo).

Pont Neuf, facing Île Saint-Louis, Paris (stock photo).


Vineyards and manor in Pommard, Burgundy (stock photo).

Inner courtyard of the Hospice de Beaune, a hospital for the poor and needy built in 1443 (stock photo)

Beaune Cathedrale, Beaune, Burgundy.

Street scene, Beaune, Burgundy.

Me tasting wines in the cellars of Drouhin in Beaune.

Local wine store in Beaune, Burgundy. That's correct, 2005 La Tache is 3990 euros, or over $5000 A BOTTLE!? 


Charcuterie stall in open air market, Nyons, Provence. Picnic lunch anyone?

Garlic stall in open air market, Nyons, Provence.

The beginning of the gorges of Ardèche. Kayak trip down the gorges is one possible day excursion.

Cote du Rhone vineyards. As far as the eye could see in places.

Provençal summer salad. 

L'Oustalet Restaurant in Gigondas, Provence. This is where I first fell in love with a white Château de Beaucastel.

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  • Daniel

    Did any of you beautiful ladies come back with a Frenchman in one of your suitcases, or did you just carry back some great bourgognes millésimés?

    July 17

    • Erinn

      I tried, but he didn't clear customs. ;-)

      2 · July 17

    • Laurel

      What happens in France, stays in France!

      2 · July 18

  • Jim F.

    Back to Paris

    We drove all day yesterday up to Paris, lunched in Beaune and stayed overnight near the CDG airport. Flights out today. Tons of photos yet to upload. See you all soon!

    2 · July 15

  • Jim F.

    We have arrived in Provence, beautiful house in hill-top village near Port St-Esprit. Pics coming. Before leaving Beaune, we had a tour of the Bouchard cellars, tasting, and bought a ton of wine. Next day after driving down to Provence, had a tour and tasting at Beaucastel in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Fantastic!

    2 · July 12

  • Jim F.

    We had wine tasting with light dinner at Leflaive last night. Mostly whites, did horizontal flights of their Meursault, Chassange-Montrachet and Puligny-Montrachet village level, then 1ere cru. Total terroir comparison--without and then with food. Fantastic!!

    July 9

  • Jim F.


    We made it! Paris was amazing, and last night several of us topped it all off going to the ballet at the Opera house. But all ready for a week tasting wine in the country. Maison LeFlaive, Puligny-Montrachet, just south of Beaune, Burgundy. Chardonnay started here...

    July 8

  • Jim F.

    More about our meal at Relais Louis XIII. Michelin 2 star (3 is max) in 6th district Left Bank. Classified 16th century building, classic haut cuisine francaise. We all had 7+ course tasting menu in a private room, some photos posted. MUCH wine, mostly magnums well-aged,"value" wines. Pictures and details coming.

    1 · July 7

  • Jim F.

    Hanging in cafe St-Germain, about to do walk up Seine and Eiffel tower. Biggest fashion shocker for me is seeing Parisiennes wearing sneakers!?

    July 7

  • Jim F.

    Greetings from Paris! We're uploading photos as we go. Lots of fabulous food and wine. La Coupoule brasserie first night, Willy's wine bar last night with some French friends. Cafe lunches and pitchers of rose, Sancerre, Minervois in between. Stay tuned....

    2 · July 4

    • Juan

      They look great…!…"Bon séjour"

      July 4

  • John V.

    Have fun everyone! We expect lots of stories and slideshows when you get back. Elena and I will join you next time!

    1 · June 30

  • Juan

    Do place photos…it's lovely there…have a good flight everyone…!

    June 28

    • Jim F.

      Thank you Juan. We'll have a continuous feed :)

      1 · June 28

    • Juan

      It sounds good to me…enjoy it !

      June 28

  • Daniel

    I told all of them you were coming and they're ready for you. :o)

    1 · May 20, 2014

  • Moira M.

    That sounds amazing.... I'm so jealous.. I will not be to go this year, because I am in a TN wedding.. Doh!#$#!@

    1 · February 16, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    February 14, 2014

    • Erinn

      Epicure is on my short list. I wonder if I'm trendy enough for Le Bar!

      February 14, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      No question but yes. I would like to start at the bar since Epicure may require financing.

      February 14, 2014

  • Jim F.

    hi everyone. Feb 2nd is super bowl Sunday, so we should pick a different date for our next planning meeting. I'm free Sat 2/1 or following Sunday, 2/9, both afternoons. Post preferences here.

    January 23, 2014

    • Erinn

      Sounded like we have a critical mass for 2/2. Planning on that day. Happy to send out minutes.

      January 25, 2014

    • Jim F.

      Hi. Our next planning meeting is this Sunday 2/2, everyone on list should have gotten an email with details. If you are on wait list, then attending this meeting is mandatory to be considered. We are about to book.

      January 31, 2014

  • Lois

    Sent a comment to all of you this morning, but don't know where it went. I'm a newbie to the Paris plans, altho' I've been expressing an interest. I'm NOT going to Brit Col. after all, and am interested in the Paris trip. I live in Acton and invite you over to my home on 2/9, at whatever hour works for people.....I'll suggest 3-6 or so, for a meeting and lunch/dinner or earlier for brunch. Anyone interested?

    January 23, 2014

    • Jim F.

      Lois. Thanks for the offer, but I've got this taken care of. You are welcome to remain on the wait list, but spots are limited and there are others in front of you so I doubt you'll get to go on this trip.

      January 24, 2014

  • Erinn

    I agree with Anthony that we should meet sooner (if we can) so we can finalize accommodations before they book up. I am still willing to host a brunch on the 2nd. We can have our regularly scheduled wine in the form of mimosas. Up to the group. As a note, I do live with cats. The place will be cleaned, sprayed down with allergen spray and the cats will be away. However, wanted to mention in the event anyone has a severe allergy.

    January 23, 2014

  • Jim F.

    We just had our 2nd planning meeting, and I've moved up those who have attended both meetings and still want to do the trip. Those waiting still probably can go, but should plan to come to all future meetings. We are shooting for a final go/no go commitment by Feb 1st since we need to book lodging and flights.

    January 6, 2014

  • Jim F.

    Feel free to ask questions here.

    November 5, 2013

    • Lois

      Hi Jim, This trip sounds amazing and I'd like to go the next time around; it conflicts with a trip my family is planning. Thinking you might want to do it every few years!

      January 5, 2014

  • Jim F.

    Next planning Sunday, Jan. 5th, early afternoon. Those on the waitlist should have received a lodging questionnaire.

    December 19, 2013

    • Rachel

      Just signed up on the waitlist. Could you fwd the info email?

      December 31, 2013

    • Theo

      Unfortunately I will miss today's meeting. I am still out of town and am unable to get back to Boston this weekend due to all the flight cancellations from the storm...

      January 5, 2014

  • Erinn

    Are there any more specifics around what time on Sunday? I have something that I need to RSVP to for the early evening and I just want to confirm time for this before I do. Please post as soon as is convenient. Many thanks! Erinn

    January 1, 2014

    • Jim F.

      More details later today, but 3-5:30ish, Davis square.

      January 1, 2014

    • Jim F.

      Email with details just sent, those on waitlist as of 4:30 should have gotten it. Contact me if not, or if you sign later on.

      January 1, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Your pictorial preview of France looks quite inviting, I'm an early (Cambridge) retiree that's quite interested in your tour. Looking forward to meeting you in the near future at a meetup.

    December 2, 2013

    • Jim F.

      Hi Paul. If you are interested in the trip, please RSVP to get on the wait list. That way you'll receive emails and see comments from others about the trip.

      December 3, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Thanks for the info. See you at Uncorked. I might live down the street from you on Harvard St.

      December 16, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I love Europe but haven't been to Paris (France).
    When is the movie?

    December 2, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Trip sounds interesting, haven't been to Paris

    November 29, 2013

  • Jim F.

    Trip dates set: July 1st - 15th. We will have another planning meeting mid-December. Still open to new arrivals, but the window is closing.

    November 25, 2013

    • Jim F.

      Guess it won't be 13-16!? more later...

      November 26, 2013

    • Eric

      I'm in DC[masked]

      November 26, 2013

  • Laurel

    Thanks Jim. I will be away from the 13th to the 16th as well.

    November 25, 2013

  • Jim F.

    Kickoff planning meeting at Eric's 11/23 5pm prior to Thanksgiving wine event. I will send details to those on wait list.

    November 12, 2013

  • Jim F.

    Woo hoo Anthony!! I'll propose our first planning meeting soon. Assume last week of June, first week of July. Need to align sat. Market day in Nyons.

    November 7, 2013

  • Anthony G

    Jim, When do we finalize the dates? I'd like to begin planning for flights. Looks like my daughter, Ava, and I will be in for the full 2 weeks.

    November 7, 2013

9 went

Your organizer's refund policy for Wine and foodie tour of FRANCE mid-summer 2014!!!!

Refunds offered if:

  • the Meetup is cancelled
  • the Meetup is rescheduled

Additional notes: $100 organizing / planning fee, payable now, but due: 3/1/14 $200 guide fee, payable from 3/1/14, but due: 6/1/14 These fees are refundable up to the due date. If I can't go on the trip for some reason, I'll either find an alternate guide, or refund t

Payments you make go to the organizer, not to Meetup. You must make refund requests to the organizer.

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